Order of Service

One to the lady on the right of the host, and the other to the lady at the opposite end of the table.

The services continue around to the right, but occasional butlers direct that after serving the “lady of honor” on the right of the host, the host is skipped and the dish presented to the lady on his left, after which the dish continues around the table to the left, to ladies and gentlemen as they come.

In this event the second service starts opposite the lady of honor and also skips the first gentleman, after which it goes around the table to the left, skips the lady of honor and ends with the host.

The first service when it reaches the other end of the table skips the lady who was first served and ends with the gentleman who was skipped.

It is perhaps more polite to the ladies to give them preference, but it is complicated, and leaves another gentleman as well as the host, sitting between two ladies who are eating while he is apparently forgotten.

The object (which is to prevent the lady who is second in precedence from being served last) can be accomplished by beginning the first service from the lady on the right of the host and continuing on the right 6 places; the second service begins with the lady on the left of the host and continues on the left five places, and then comes back to the host.

The best way of all, perhaps, is to vary the “honor” by serving the entrée and salad courses first to the lady on the left instead of to the lady on the right and continue the service of these two courses to the left.

Emily Post

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